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Tiger King’s Joe Exotic says he has ‘aggressive cancer’

Joe Exotic, whose real name is Joseph Maldonado-Passage, is currently being held in a Texas prison

Image: PA

The man known as Tiger King, who gained fame in a Netflix documentary following his conviction for trying to hire someone to kill an animal rights activist, has said he has cancer.

“It is with a sad face that I have to tell you … that my prostate biopsy’s came back with an aggressive cancer,” Joe Exotic, who is being held at a federal prison in Fort Worth, Texas, wrote on a Twitter post.

The blond mullet-wearing former Oklahoma zookeeper, whose real name is Joseph Maldonado-Passage, is known for his expletive-laden rants on YouTube and a failed 2018 Oklahoma gubernatorial campaign.

He was prominently featured in the popular documentary Tiger King: Murder, Mayhem And Madness.

Maldonado-Passage was sentenced to 22 years in prison in 2020 after being convicted for violating federal wildlife laws and a failed murder-for-hire plot targeting Carole Baskin, who runs a rescue sanctuary for big cats in Florida.

A three-judge panel for the US Court of Appeals for the 10th Circuit in Denver in July ordered Maldonado-Passage be resentenced to a shorter term, finding that the trial court wrongly treated the two convictions separately in calculating his prison term.

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The panel said his advisory sentencing range should be between 17-and-a-half years and just under 22 years, rather than between just under 22 years and 27 years in prison used by the trial court.

Maldonado-Passage wrote on Twitter for prayers and “the world to be my voice to be released”, saying there is no evidence he committed crimes.

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